Fitness and ITP : Hi all, Just... - ITP Support Assoc...

ITP Support Association

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Fitness and ITP


Hi all,

Just wondering if anyone has noticed any relation to their platelet levels and fitness?

I've had ITP on and off since 2012, the 3 episodes I have had has been while training to get fitter. Thought it was just a coincidence however.

Then during my treatment this time I decided I would start training to run a marathon, but just as I feel I'm making progress with platelet levels they seem to drop, and this happens to be at and around the time when I push my training up a notch.

I haven't ran for a few weeks now, but I've been walking in the mountains every weekend, so not pushing my body to limits, and probably just a coincidence again but my levels have become more steady.

Has anyone else noticed pushing body to limit / working it hard and levels dropping?

11 Replies

I believe that it is known that any stress, OF ANY KIND, can reduce platelet levels.

My heamatologist has agreed that exercise is good but has criticised my longer and more arduous cycling.

Now I do keep my cycling to less strenuous rides.

I have also read of patients who had an extremely stressful working life who changed their work and improved their condition.


Ironspur14 in reply to Kwenda

Thank you for that,

It does make quite a lot of sense thinking about it, my 3 episodes have all been at times I have been mentally stressed for sometime, as well as trying to get physically better too.

A change in my life style my be needed!!

I started to exercise at the start of the year to try and lose weight and get fit and my platelets have now dropped to 22 from 47. But I am also in a stressful situation and was using exercise to reduce stress so difficult to know what the true cause is. I also find that exercising with ITP makes me more tired - I don't get the 'high' afterwards - I have to go and lie down!

dede7 in reply to Fionn123

The exercise I have been selecting is walking and soon swimming !

Both my episodes have followed periods of extreme stress.. both physically and mental. I suppose it's your body's way of forcing you to chill.

I used to do alot of walking... I can still go for a walk but I need to take it at a slower pace and not walk so far.

Hi,I've also noticed that with myself as well but have not paid close attention.I will pay close attention & feedback.

I really have to be moderate -sometimes I feel great and over accomplish and the next day I pay for it -I try to moderate more and more

Yeah I feel the same. When I workout more continuously, my bruises will increase so much. Relaxed days will be peaceful but difficult to manage weight being relaxed all the time.. :|

Just an update,

After 10 months (this time) of being treated, over the last 2 weeks I have increased my platelet levels on my own! Whoop!!

I've gone from 75 (towards the end life of last nplate injection) to 126 to 148. I don't believe it's a coincidence that it's been 5 weeks since I last pushed my body in the gym and my levels going up.

I'm still keeping myself active because obviously that's important and I need to stay fit n healthy if I can, but instead of the gym I'm walking in the mountains which keeps the body but also relaxes my mind too.

Hope your all doing well

Hi all again!

New update, and probably a bit of confirmation really. Stress n my blood/immune system do not mix!!!

A few weeks ago I had no nplate and no other medication, and still my platelets rose to 148!!!! On their own!! And was after a very calm period at work.

3 weeks later - 113, still very happy with that!!

Yesterday after 3 really crap n stressful weeks at work my count is 10, needed an nplate shot (works best for me) and some steroids for a quiker response.

So to me it seems to me that my stress levels and my platelet levels are directly linked. - time to find a new job whilst not getting stressed or worried about things!!

Take care everyone

Tenk in reply to Ironspur14

I'm finding the same. Frustratingly my haematologist just says 'there are no clinical trials to prove the link between stress and ITP'. But I suppose it doesn't matter what she thinks as she can't do anything about the stress in my life anyway! Good luck de-stressing!

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